House, Condo or Townhome???

House, Condo or Townhome???

There are a lot of things to consider when purchasing a home.  One of the most important is the type of home you will buy. The three types of homes that this article will focus on are single-family homes, townhomes, or condos.  There are positives and negatives to each type of property and a good real estate agent can help a buyer make the right decision for them. In Flagstaff, AZ there are lots of these different types of properties for buyers to choose from.  Location, budget, maintenance are all just a few things to think about when deciding about these different types of properties.

Single Family Home

The single family home is usually the most popular among buyers. A single family home is a single detached dwelling that is completely separated by open space on all sides. The home does not have any shared walls. The owner owns the home and the land that the home sits on.  Usually, you will get more land when you purchase a single family home.  A single family home will usually have some sort of front and back yard space. This is a must for some buyers but also is extra maintenance that a buyer needs to consider. In a single family home, the owner is responsible for all of the interior and exterior maintenance. If there is a leak in the roof it is the owner’s responsibility to repair that. Another thing to consider is the home owner’s insurance policy.  It will, likely, cost more in a single family home. A benefit of owning a single family home, however, is that you can choose what the landscaping looks like, what the color of your house is, etc. (remember, however, certain neighborhoods with Homeowner Associations may have restrictions on this).

Townhomes

Townhomes are a different style of home that a buyer may want to consider. A townhome is similar to a single family home except that there is usually a shared wall with an adjacent unit. There is often a garage and a small backyard area with townhomes. The owner owns both the home and the land that it sits on. Most townhomes are part of a Homeowners’ Association that manages and maintains the exterior of the property and any common areas. Often, with a townhome, the HOA will take care of the front yard landscaping but the backyard is the responsibility of the owner. There are usually monthly HOA fees associated with townhomes and these fees help pay for the exterior, road, and other maintenance. A lot of homeowners like the fact that there is less maintenance when it comes to a townhome. Often, the homeowner’s insurance is lower because you are only insuring the interior. Part of the HOA dues will be paying for the exterior policy.

Condominiums

Condominiums are another type of property that homeowners may consider. Condos will be in a multi-unit complex. The homeowners of a condominium own the walls in. Condominiums will often have perks like gyms, clubhouses, and other things that owners have a common interest in. Like townhomes, condominiums will have Homeowners Association fees. These fees will take care of the maintenance for the exterior of the buildings, any common areas, parking lots, etc. Often with a condo, you will share walls on every side. You may have a neighbor on either side of you and also above or below you. A condominium is the easiest type of property to “lock and leave.”  “Lock and leave” is a real estate term which means an owner can leave the house and not have to really think about it. With condos, you don’t have any grass to water or snow to plow. Another thing that buyers will have to consider when it comes to condominiums is the financing process.  There are some condominium developments where getting a loan can be tricky or not possible. It is important to have a real estate agent and a good lender who can help you navigate this.

Conclusion

Flagstaff offers so many different options when it comes to each of these types of homes. There are a lot of reasons that a buyer may want to choose one type of home over the other. A lot of times price becomes the factor. Townhomes are often less expensive than single family homes and condos can be less expensive than townhomes.  Buyers will want to take into account the HOA fees, however. Some townhomes and condominiums have high fees which will raise a buyer’s monthly fees quite a bit.

All buyers when purchasing a home will need to think about the resale of the home in the future. Single family homes will have the best resale value, whereas condos will have the worst of the three. There is always a bigger pool of buyers of single family homes than townhomes or condominiums.

A lot of buyers who are purchasing in Flagstaff are buying second homes. These buyers are often drawn to townhomes or condos because there is less required maintenance. A lot of people don’t mind mowing their lawns on their primary residence but it can be hard to keep up multiple homes. The same is true for buyers who are looking at homes for investment purposes. Also, a lot of people are considering buying homes to use as short term rentals and will often lean towards a townhome or condo for the same reasons. Be aware, however, that a lot of Homeowner’s Associations will not allow short term rentals so make sure your real estate agent is doing that research for you.  There are also a lot of buyers who want to invest here because of the university. Northern Arizona University brings a lot of students to our town that will need places to rent if they are not living on campus. A lot of investors will take advantage of this, as well as parents of students. A lot of parents would rather invest in a home rather than have to pay rent or dormitory fees. Townhomes and condos are often a good fit for these investors and parents.

Please know that the agents of the Elite Team at RE/Max Peak Properties are very knowledgable when it comes to all of these different types of properties and are always willing to give their professional list of pros and cons for each.